Sodium Thiosulphate (Na2S2O3)

Sodium Thiosulphate Pentahydrate



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About sodium thiosulphate

With the formula Na2S2O3, sodium thiosulphate – sometimes spelled sodium thiosulfate – is an inorganic compounds typically available in a highly hydrated form, which dissolves easily in water, but not in alcohol. It decomposes when heated, releasing toxic gases, including disodium oxide and sulphur oxide. At the risk of explosion, it should be stored carefully, away from oxidising agents, such as potassium permanganate, nitrate or chlorate.

How is sodium thiosulphate produced?

In the industry, sodium thiosulphate is synthesised from by-products of sodium sulphide production. This solution, containing sodium carbonate, is mixed with sulphur dioxide and subsequently re-crystallised. Another possible method involves boiling sodium polysulphide and nitro compounds, followed by several steps of concentration and purification of sodium thiosulphate. In the lab, this chemical can be produced from sodium sulphide heated in the presence of sulphur; or alternatively, boiling sulphur and sodium hydroxide.

First aid measures

In case of contact with skin or eyes, wash affected area with copious amounts of water, and remove contaminated clothing. In case of ingestion, rinse mouth and seek medical advice. As a safety precaution, always wear appropriate protective clothing, including gloves and goggles.

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